Kauaʻi’s Collaborative Approach to Supporting Children and Families Impacted by AbusePosted on Jun 8, 2023 in Featured News, News & Reports, Press Releases
LIHUʻE, Hawaiʻi — What began as a simple idea to learn about the post-COVID resources available to the people of Kaua‘i to help bridge the gaps for youth and families involved within the Family Court system, blossomed into a three-part series involving nearly 70 non-profit and government agencies.
Leading the charge were Fifth Circuit Family Court Judge Gregory H. Meyers and Judge Stephanie R. S. Char. With the help and coordination of the Children’s Justice Center’s Program Director Karla Huerta, they enhanced community partnerships by identifying key community resources and local experts who share the common goal of improving outcomes in the courtroom for children and families impacted by abuse.
This training series provided a first-time opportunity for agency leaders to foster connections with unfamiliar faces as so many organizations have introduced new staff since the beginning of the pandemic.
The non-profits and government agencies shared valuable information about their programs, resources and referral processes with one another. For example, the Multidisciplinary Team that responds to reports of child abuse, coordinated by the Judiciary’s Children’s Justice Center, provided a panel presentation about Kauai’s coordinated response to incidents of child abuse and other violent crimes.
Judge Meyers, Judge Char, and Judiciary staff presented an overview of the Family Court process, including information on child custody/visitation, juvenile matters, domestic violence, child protective services, protective orders, and divorce proceedings.
Mahalo to Judges Meyers and Char, who provided the necessary foundation to strengthen community partnerships for children and families impacted by abuse, and to the Kauaʻi Children’s Justice Center who helped coordinate these training sessions.